Skip to main content
Michael T Millar
Avvo
Pro

Michael Millar’s Answers

3,487 total


  • I have a contract that is breached as a result of incomplete and insufficient work done on a 2 family home project.

    The contractor received 80% of the funds and less than 20% of the work is completed. I have a contract with the contractor and the work that he did complete is incorrect and cannot pass inspection. He fails to fix the errors and wishes to obtain a...

    Michael’s Answer

    Home improvement contracts are governed by the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. There are strict regulations for home improvements including that the contract specify a start date and an end date. Your first option is to contact the NJ Division of Consumer Affairs and file a complaint. Your other option is to contact a consumer protection attorney who is familiar with home improvement law and regulations.

    See question 
  • Real estate attorney AND title company?

    I am a first time home buyer. I hired an attorney to represent me during the attorney review process. She is doing all the due diligence, title search, survey, etc. Do I also have to hire the services of a title company to assist me in the closing...

    Michael’s Answer

    Under the new Federal Consumer Protection Bureau (FCPB) rules that go into effect this fall, New Jersey closing procedure will undergo a significant change. With some lenders, the rules will go into affect before the October 1st deadline. NJ, like most of the country, will move towards title company closings. Thus, you may pay for an attorney to negotiate your contract and home inspection issues and also pay for a title company to close the mortgage and title.

    See question 
  • I cosigned a 1 yr lease that went month/month after year. Am I still on the lease if I didn't sign after 1st year?

    Do I need to write a letter to get my name off the lease if I didn't sign on for the month to month?

    Michael’s Answer

    Yes - it is likely that you are still liable under the original lease. Thus, if you have moved out, you should send written notice to the landlord that you no longer reside there and and cancel the lease as it applies to you.

    See question 
  • Property was reassessed after purchase. Who is liable for prior years tax due?

    Few months ago, I purchased residential property with 3 units in it. I just received RE Tax bill which was tripled of what it was when I bought this property. It turned out that prior owner did not let assessors come in to examine the property and...

    Michael’s Answer

    In residential real estate, a seller has an affirmative obligation to disclose latent material conditions that are not readily observable. If the Seller made improvements, but failed to permit inspections until after the closing, arguably you have an action against the seller for the failure to disclose the fact that there would be a significant increase in taxes. On the other hand, if you knew that the property had been renovated, there may be an issue with what pre-closing due diligence you conducted.

    See question 
  • My home and car have been damaged by my neighbors trees and it's at my expense.

    My insurance company and I will be paying for my damages but I would like to know if there is someway I can let him know that from now on his trees should be maintained. One Insurance adjuster tells me I can send him a letter but another one says...

    Michael’s Answer

    You don't explain how the trees are damaging your property. As indicated by colleague, you have a right to trim any branches that hang over onto your side of the property line. If the tree is old and diseased so that limbs are falling off, then you can send a letter to put him on notice that there is an issue with the tree. The prior notice may help you in the future if a limb falls and damages your property and the neighbor took not steps to address the issues raised by your notice..

    See question 
  • Can you stop a defendant from selling assets during a lawsuit?

    my former business partner owes me money. he has an apartment which i know is paid for. however i am pretty sure that as soon as he is served with the lawsuit, he will transfer or mortgage the apartment so that there will be no equity there. my q...

    Michael’s Answer

    As previously indicated, the relief of a pre-judgment attachment is a rarely granted remedy. You would have to review the particular circumstances of your matter with a local attorney to determine if yours is the exception to the general rule.
    There is also a fraudulent conveyances law which provides that the transfer of property to avoid creditors can be undone under certain circumstances. For example, deeding a home to a spouse or child for less than fair market value would likely be deemed a fraudulent conveyance if the person knew of a debt or lawsuit prior to the transfer.

    See question 
  • OK I've never used this site before but I have a real estate question about liability.

    I live in a very rural area of Arizona called Happy Jack. We live in a subdivision of sorts with no homeowners association or County services. When I bought this place there was a road agreement filed with the County that states the road is privat...

    Michael’s Answer

    If it is a private road, you likely have the right to gate it and prevent access by the general public.

    See question 
  • Can a listing agent list a 4 bedroom house, when it is legally only 3 bedrooms?

    We are currently in the inspection contingency period of our home buying. After the inspection, we found out the basement can't be used as a bedroom (not large enough windows for a fireman). We also found noticeable mold in the basement which was...

    Michael’s Answer

    You need to take your real estate contract to an attorney. Your contract likely has a home inspection contingency which provides deadlines for inspecting the home and making demands for repairs. It is only after you demand repairs remediation and the Seller refuses, that a right to cancel arises.

    See question 
  • Ex husband not on deed or mortgage. Does he still have to sign quit claim deed in nj

    I alone am on the deed and mortgage note. He has never been on either. We are divorced and I am trying to go forward with a quit claim transfer to the bank, but they want his signature also. Is it necessary? Can I just move forward without his sig...

    Michael’s Answer

    If you purchased the home prior to your divorce, and unless your divorce decree gives sole ownership to you and your ex previously deeded his interest to you, your ex-sposoue will likely have to sign the deed.

    See question 
  • I have a fenced yard. The town where l live is now saying that I have to take care of the land on the other side of fence.

    The township use to cut it now they are saying that I have to.

    Michael’s Answer

    The question is: who owns the land in question? The location of the fence is unimportant. It is your property lines that are important. You should look to the survey that you received when you purchased the property.

    See question